Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Back in the saddle again

me at age 2

Well friends, it's been a crazy eight months. Between a promotion at work, a new romance, moving, and settling into new routines, the blog took the back burner. Unfortunately, my health did too.

Have you ever seen the episode of How I Met Your Mother where Barney and Robin are dating and realize they've totally let themselves go? Robin doesn't shower anymore; Barney gains a bunch of weight. They've got a serious case of "relationship gut". Well my friends, it appears relationship gut does exist and happens to the best of us. Between the cocktails and dinners out when we started dating, to the beer and takeout at home when we got more settled, my new love and I both got the gut.

I was also at a bit of an impasse with my disease. Being a dietitian I've always wanted to try and manage my disease with my diet, but there is so much conflicting information out there. Do I do low starch, but miss out on the phytonutrients and antioxidants from eliminating some fruits and veggies? And what does eating all of that animal protein do to my cholesterol? (ps - my cholesterol went up when following low starch) Or, do I embrace a gluten free, vegan lifestyle? Do I quit cooking food all together and go raw? Or is it best to follow the tried and true dietitian mantra of "all foods in moderation"? My head was swirling with options, and even my fellow dietitian friends couldn't agree on which would be the best path for me.

Also during this time my insurance plan had changed and my deductible skyrocketed. This meant that I could no longer afford my Humira injections. Unfortunately, I didn't qualify for the Humira assistance program, but I definitely couldn't afford the $1500 a month injections. It became very painful to exercise, so I stopped. Some days it hurt so bad getting out of bed that I cried. The last thing I wanted to do in that state of being was hit the gym.

I've gained back every pound I lost, plus a few extra. I had been feeling a combination of depressed, disappointed, and embarrassed. Honestly, I was avoiding blogging because I felt like a complete and utter failure. Then through a series of conversations with my friends and my love, I realized I'm only human, and certainly not the first person to gain back lost weight.

So here it is, early March, on the cusp of Spring. Seems like a good time for new beginnings.

The first thing everyone agrees on for managing arthritic pain is maintaining a healthy weight, so that is what I am focusing on most. I'm back at bootcamp, cooking more meals at home, and tracking my caloric intake with the help of the My Fitness pal app for my iPhone (which I love and highly recommend). I'm trying to drink more water and less alcohol, eat a bigger breakfast and a smaller dinner, and take into account how much exercise I've done when deciding if I want a treat. With the help of these changes, I've managed to lose ten pounds in the last three weeks.

I know it will take me a while to get back into a routine, and I'm still not sure which diet is best for arthritis, but I had to start somewhere. Thanks again for joining me on my journey. Yee haw.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, I just found your blog because I'm going to try to run the arthritis Jingle Bell run on Sunday and I was googling it and your blog popped up! I have had AS for 15 years, but was not diagnosed for 13 or so. I'm in Seattle too and would love to have coffee or something sometime. I have found bootcamp is the only thing that really helps me, so that is another thing that surprised me about your blog!